ADDIS ABABA, Feb.4 (Xinhua)--Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on Tuesday inaugurated the Chinese built 254 Mega Watts (MW) Genale Dawa III hydro dam project.
The Ethiopia Minister of Water, Irrigation and Electricity, Seleshi Bekele and Ethiopia Minister of Innovation and Technology, Abraham Belay also attended the hydro dam inauguration ceremony.
The hydro dam project built by the China Gezhouba Group Corporation cost around 451 million U.S. dollars with the majority of the money needed to finance the project sourced through loans from the China Export-Import Bank.
Speaking to Xinhua, Moges Mekonen, Communication Director at Ethiopia Electric Power (EEP), said the 254 MW Genale Dawa III hydro dam is expected to fill a critical gap in Ethiopia's ongoing efforts to meet the energy needs of the country's estimated 110 million people.
The 254 MW Genale Dawa III hydro project is located in southeastern Ethiopia, 630 kms southeast of Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa.
The energy sector is one of Ethiopia's priorities as the country envisages to become a light manufacturing hub in Africa and middle-income economy by 2025.
Ethiopia recently unveiled a 10-year energy roadmap that aims to increase energy generation four-fold using various energy sources such as geothermal, hydro, wind, co-generation and solar power.